Pre-war Syria in photos

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Syria, once the beacon of prosperity in Middle Eastern tourism until the 2011 uprising. I previously explored the wonderful history in another article which can be found here.

This post is by no means a promotion for tourism!

It’s simply an opportunity for those who didn’t get the chance to see what fascinating places this country features.

Krak des Chevaliers was once a crusader castle and is one of the most important preserved medieval castles in the world.

Krak des Chevaliers was once a crusader castle and is one of the most important preserved medieval castles in the world.

Syria really surprised me with views like this, I didn't know a huge amount about the country before I visited so it was a pleasant surprise to see a mixture of landscapes.

Syria really surprised me with views like this, I didn’t know a huge amount about the country before I visited so it was a pleasant surprise to see a mixture of landscapes.

Afamea (Also known as Apamea) is located at a strategic crossroads which is why the city flourished.

Afamea (Also known as Apamea) is located at a strategic crossroads which is why the city flourished.

Syria

Roman architecture could be seen everywhere, especially impressive colonnade's

Roman architecture could be seen everywhere, especially impressive colonnade’s

The Great Colonnade at Apamea was the main colonnaded avenue of the ancient city of Apamea in the Orontes River valley in northwestern Syria. The monumental colonnade is among the longest and most famous in the Roman world.

The Great Colonnade at Apamea was the main colonnaded avenue of the ancient city of Apamea in the Orontes River valley in northwestern Syria. The monumental colonnade is among the longest and most famous in the Roman world.

Before the war the tourism industry was thriving, I'd hate to see what happened to all the amazing animals I encountered on my visit.

Before the war the tourism industry was thriving, I’d hate to see what happened to all the amazing animals I encountered on my visit.

The beautiful Giant Norias (waterwheels) of Hama, sadly these haven't survived the civil war.

The beautiful Giant Norias (waterwheels) of Hama, sadly these haven’t survived the civil war.

The backstreets of cities including Damascus and Aleppo were fascinating, you could end up in someone's house without realising.

The backstreets of cities including Damascus and Aleppo were fascinating, you could end up in someone’s house without realising.

I could have happily sat here all day, incredible view, stunning history.

I could have happily sat here all day, incredible view, stunning history.

Sadly I don't remember where in Syria this was, if anyone could help identify it please email me.

Sadly I don’t remember where in Syria this was, if anyone could help identify it please email me.

The gates of Aleppo Citadel

The gates of Aleppo Citadel

Make the most of this image because Aleppo will not look like this again for a very long time. This photo was taken from the Citadel and shows how the city was clean, organised and incredibly historic.

Make the most of this image because Aleppo will not look like this again for a very long time. This photo was taken from the Citadel and shows how the city was clean, organised and incredibly historic.

The ancient souk of Aleppo, many locals would shop here for their daily essentials. Such a shame it was burned down.

The ancient souk of Aleppo, many locals would shop here for their daily essentials. Such a shame it was burned down.

The only way to described the walled city of Rasafa is isolated, incredibly well preserved with some ruins.

The only way to described the walled city of Rasafa is isolated, incredibly well preserved with some ruins.

The beating heart of Syria is the Euphrates river, bringing life to thousands of residents and transforming the landscape from barren dessert into lush green fertile fields.

The beating heart of Syria is the Euphrates river, bringing life to thousands of residents and transforming the landscape from barren dessert into lush green fertile fields.

The historic caravan city of Palmyra has to be one of the most amazing places I've ever been to, especially when I arrived at 5am on a camel just as the sun was rising.

The historic caravan city of Palmyra has to be one of the most amazing places I’ve ever been to, especially when I arrived at 5am on a camel just as the sun was rising.

Palmyra was an absolutely huge site with many places to explore, sadly I'm going to guess that many treasures have been looted.

Palmyra was an absolutely huge site with many places to explore, sadly I’m going to guess that many treasures have been looted.

The famous colonnade of Palmyra, many thousands of tourists explored this site but it's likely none have visited since 2011.

The famous colonnade of Palmyra, many thousands of tourists explored this site but it’s likely none have visited since 2011.

The theatre of Palmyra, what can I say but WOW! Simply stunning, I was able to picture myself sitting here in this Roman theatre back in the Second Century when it was built. Incredible experience.

The theatre of Palmyra, what can I say but WOW! Simply stunning, I was able to picture myself sitting here in this Roman theatre back in the Second Century when it was built. Incredible experience.

On one of the main roads towards Iraq I found Bagdad Cafe, I'm going to take a random guess this place doesn't exist anymore. When I visited in 2010 it was a mecca for tourists and was in the middle of nowhere.

On one of the main roads towards Iraq I found Bagdad Cafe, I’m going to take a random guess this place doesn’t exist anymore. When I visited in 2010 it was a mecca for tourists and was in the middle of nowhere.

I'd never have believed if somebody had me questioning which city was more dangerous but sadly I think right now Baghdad might be slightly more secure than Damascus.

I’d never have believed if somebody had me questioning which city was more dangerous but sadly I think right now Baghdad might be slightly more secure than Damascus.

A nighttime view overlooking Damascus, a beautiful insight into one of the world's oldest inhabited cities.

A nighttime view overlooking Damascus, a beautiful insight into one of the world’s oldest inhabited cities.

All images are Copyrighted © Matt Baron, please contact me if you wish to use any.

Further Information

If you’d like to discover more photographs and information from this trip or any others please feel free to ask me any questions. You can visit my Facebook page and please don’t forget to ‘Like’ Travel Geek UK.

3 thoughts on “Pre-war Syria in photos

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